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Best matches of unlikely workers


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This is just an idea for a thread I had the other day, don't know if it will fly but here goes. The idea is to discuss wrestlers who had reasonably long careers but don't normally get a lot of talk and discuss what their best match was. This isn't for great workers, no Rick Steamboat or Jushin Liger. It isn't really for bad workers (although that's in the eye of the beholder). It's for discussing the Al Perezes and Honky Tonk Mans (Men?) , the working wrestlers who may not have been considered spectacular but to remember the time (or times) they really took their chance to shine. Somebody suggests a name, then people suggest what they thought were their best (or really good underrated) matches and say why.


Here goes ... first up, Tom Zenk. The Z-Man, career midcarder, briefly post-retirement internet sensation, good looking guy, never truly reached the upper level but generally solid wrestler.


Best Match :


Pillman vs. Z-Man Wrestlewar 5/17/92 for the WCW Light Heavyweight Title


This initially looked like it would be a straightforward babyface match going in, but they rushed an angle just before the PPV and it was IMHO a pretty good one. Zenk and Pillman both get involved in a post-match skirmish with Pillman's new rival Scotty Flamingo, and in a joint interview afterwards, Z-Man makes the mistake of offering to put the title he hasn't won yet on the line against Flamingo. Pillman takes offense at Zenk seemingly taking for granted that he will win the belt and there is some tension going into the match. Pillman does a great job of telling the story of "You're my friend, but I am really pissed at you right now". Working with his former partner seemed to inspire Zenk to bring his A Game, and while it has been a while since I have watched this match, I remember getting very involved in it.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Probably Al Snow and Devon Storm vs. Sabu in '94-95 NWA. When I saw these matches for the first time, I hadn't really seen all that much of Al, and what I'd seen of Devon was his WCW run as Crowbar. So expectations were relatively low going in.

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I mentioned it in another thread.


Jeff Jarrett vs. Raven on Impact in May of 2006. Raven was having all those problems and completely useless in the ring by this point. He and Jarrett went out and had this great garbage arena brawl that was just amazing because Raven could barely walk and couldn't bump.


I'll second the Rikishi/HHH match.

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I liked that Rikishi title challenge of Trip on TV where the fans were massively pulling for Rikishi to pull off the upset. Seemed like the high point of the character/gimmick both in terms of a good match and connecting with the fans.



The set up made this if it's the one I'm thinking of where they did a random lottery drawing for the title shot backstage. From memory Trip did a good job selling fear of Kishi when he was announced and the locker room letting out a collective "oh shit, The Game is fucked" type vibe when he was announced was a cool moment.

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This is the one you're thinking of, and possibly the one I'm recalling:


Part 1:



Part 2:



First SmackDown of 2000, right after Trip beat Big Show for the title on opening Raw of the year.


What's amazing about this is that they just put Rikishi together with Too Cool in late November, and really Rikishi hadn't been pushed super hard prior to that: not long after his debut.


In turn, Trip & Steph had combined as heels only on the 12/12/99 Armageddon opposite Vince. A month before, Trip had been bombing out to the degree that they took the belt off him and gave it to Show at Survivors.


It really is amazing how the pieces came together so quickly on so many things.


BTW, if anyone wants some fun/pain, go back and look at the Radicals push and how quickly that was booked to shit. When we talk about Trip making sure there wouldn't be anymore Austin/Rock/Foley's once he was moving into power, look no futher than that moment. The start of a roll of fucking over potential threats. :)



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